Anum Merchant, Trevin Stevens, and Delaney Demaret said they feel well prepared to attend graduate school at Oxford.

Oxford bound: Jepson Scholars receive full scholarships for their graduate studies

June 10, 2024

Student Experience

Since 1902, Rhodes Scholars have received comprehensive scholarships to pursue graduate programs at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. At the University of Richmond, the Jepson Scholars Program offers a similar opportunity to graduates of the Jepson School of Leadership Studies.

Philanthropists Robert S. Jepson Jr. and Alice Andrews Jepson created the Jepson Scholars Foundation in 2019 to cover tuition, food, housing, and fees for graduating Jepson School seniors who receive the award to pursue a one-year master’s program at Oxford.    

“Future leaders will gain firsthand experience at a renowned global institution and live and work in an international environment,” said Jepson, a Georgia businessman who holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Robins School of Business. “With the benefit of a world-class undergraduate and graduate education, Jepson Scholars will be prepared to lead both at home and abroad.”

Since the program’s inception, eight Jepson Scholars have graduated from Oxford, and another six are on track to graduate in 2024. They have earned master’s degrees in varied disciplines including Chinese studies, theology, and education.

This fall, three 2024 leadership studies graduates will matriculate at Oxford as Jepson Scholars.

Delaney Demaret, a leadership studies and global studies major from Elk Grove Village, Illinois, will pursue a master of science in Nature, Society and Environmental Governance. She was a member of the University of Richmond’s Amazon Borderlands Spatial Analysis Team and completed her Jepson School internship in Peru with the nonprofit Conservación Amazónica. She recently presented her senior research on the violence associated with the extraction of resources from the Amazon at the Conference of Latin American Geography in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Anum Merchant, the daughter of Indian immigrants, has long had an interest in immigrant and refugee issues. The leadership studies and political science major from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, volunteered with immigrant communities as an undergraduate and wrote her senior thesis on the effect of populist politics on pluralism, specifically looking at host countries’ treatment of refugees and immigrants. She plans to get a master of science degree in refugee and forced migration studies at Oxford.

Trevin Stevens of Johnson City, Tennessee, also majored in leadership studies and political science. Last summer, he got a taste of state politics and policy when he completed his Jepson internship working for the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth through a prestigious Virginia Governor’s Fellowship. He researched and wrote three policy briefs about the U.S. opioid epidemic for his Jepson School senior honors thesis. He will pursue a master of public policy at Oxford’s renowned Blavatnik School of Government.

Both Demaret and Stevens said the education they received at Richmond has given them the foundation they need to succeed in their graduate programs.

Merchant agreed. “Richmond has prepared me well, and I am excited to expand my horizons even more and build on my education at Oxford.”